History and the Bible on Reddit

Today there will be an AMA session on ancient Jewish and Christian history, including but not limited to matters that intersect with the Bible, on the AskHistorians subreddit. I will be participating. Hope you’ll pay a visit! UPDATE: Here’s a direct link:  http://www.reddit.com/r/AskHistorians/comments/1sbq67/we_are_scholarsexperts_on_ancient_judaism/   [Read more...]

Critical Christmas Carols: O Little Town Of Nazareth

Having written a song that appreciates the traditional Christmas story as story, I feel like I need to counterbalance it with some other songs which take into account historical criticism and other scholarly methods and their conclusions. I have a few ideas already for new lyrics to traditional Christmas songs – and so let me [Read More...]

Touching Earth

A blog post by Jericho Brisance, “Christian Agnosticism and Touching Earth,” was drawn to my attention. It emphasizes that it is unacceptable to use history and science in an attempt to justify the Bible without being open to the disconfirmation of the Bible through the use of those same methods. Here is a taste: We [Read More...]

Bart Ehrman and the Quest of the Historical Jesus of Nazareth

Tom Verenna drew a new book to my attention, Bart Ehrman and the Quest of the Historical Jesus of Nazareth. He has now written a very negative review of the volume. Although Richard Carrier is a contributor to the volume, and says that Tom’s review is too scathing, Carrier’s own review is not much less [Read More...]

Announcing TalkHistoricity: An Index of Mythicist Claims

It was recently suggested to me that it might be useful to put together an index of mythicist claims, and the answers and responses to those claims from the perspective of mainstream historical study. Although it can be said that every claim by mythicists has probably been addressed at least implicitly in scholarly monographs and [Read More...]

More Likely a Conservative Scholar’s Kid?

Via Stephen Carlson on Facebook   [Read more...]

Review of Richard C. Carrier, Proving History

I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to review Richard Carrier’s latest book, Proving History: Bayes’s Theorem and the Quest for the Historical Jesus. I am grateful to Prometheus Books for sending me a free review copy. Carrier emphasizes from the outset that this is the first of two books, the second of [Read More...]

An Odd Diatribe from Thomas L. Thompson

In the latest issue of The Bible and Interpretation, Thomas L. Thompson offers a very odd rebuke to Bart Ehrman. Thompson mentions things like Philo's love of allegory and Qoheleth's assertion of our lack of novelty, as though these somehow will allow one to open the door to any and all interpretations of texts, including [Read More...]

Two Nazarenes

Our tour guide Baligh’s local tour organization which EF works with is called “Nazarene Tours” because Baligh himself is from Nazareth. He made an amusing comment on the first day about the fact that he is more of a Nazarene than Jesus for two reasons: Jesus was born in Bethlehem and lived in Nazareth for [Read More...]

A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jesus: How to Ask Hard Questions

This is the third installment in my blog review of A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jesus, which is part of the blog tour organized by the publisher. In my experience, students are less daunted by or opposed to the asking of really difficult questions when those questions are seen to be posed or raised by the [Read More...]

Historians on Jesus

Neil Godfrey posted on this topic over at Vridar, and it seems that the post may go some way towards explaining the puzzling tension between his affirmations of mainstream historical scholarship on the one hand, and his positive view of mythicism on the other. Godfrey writes: But what if historians (whose careers are in history [Read More...]


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